Cessna 206Bs Aid the Fight

The Philippine Air Force’s new Cessna 206B aircraft are welcomed into the service’s fleet. (Government of the Philippines)

The United States government has provided the Philippine Air Force with two new Cessna 208B piston-engine reconnaissance aircraft with an estimated value of $33 million.

The aircraft are, according to open sources, expected to be stationed at Fernando airbase near Lipa City towards the south of Luzon island. The aircraft are expected to assist ongoing counter-insurgency efforts in the Philippines, in particular around Marawi City where the country’s armed forces have been battling Islamist insurgents since May.

Aside from the 206B surveillance aircraft, open reports note that the US government has deployed US special forces in the Marawi theatre although their involvement is limited only to intelligence sharing and technical assistance to their Philippine counterparts.

by Noel Tarrazona